Client: Chinese Christian Council
Location: Shanghai, China
Completion date: 2013
China Christian Council
John Kenneth Clark
The neo-gothic cathedral built by Anglicans in 1869 is the eldest such Cathedral in China. It was colloquially known as the “Red Church” because it was built with red stones. It symbolizes “a central feature of British life in a faraway land” of the 19th century. When the church was seeking stained glass, the Chinese Christian Council requested British-style windows: both in artistic figurative style and fabrication techniques. Artist John Clark was commissioned to create designs for three choir and 19 transept windows with overall 400 sq ft.
The church asked Clark to create a design concept in which every window tells a biblical story. The imagery in each window integrates various meaningful symbols of Christianity in reference to the individual story.
Hand-blown glass with double flashes were acid-etched in various layers. Several layers of hand painting with vitreous enamels were applied to shape the details in faces and vestments.
The panels were leaded in the British tradition and installed in Shanghai from bamboo scaffoldings.
The windows are very high up in the transept of the church and the richness of the hand-blown glass colors makes the windows glow even from a long distance.